1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Mealworms Eat Quail poop???

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Little Byrd, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. Little Byrd

    Little Byrd Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    3
    61
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgia
    Hi, so I can't find much info on the internet on this topic, but recently I accidentally discovered something interesting about mealworms that could be useful. I had a digital thermometer that I used for my quails, that was completely crusted in their poop. I needed to use it to check the temp of my mealworms bin, but the long dried poop on it did not wash off easily ( and I was too lazy) so I just put it in with my mealworms as is. Every few minutes, I would come to check the temp, but every time I would find the thermometer knocked over and mealworms swarming all over it. I kept standing it up, but the mealworms kept knocking it over and burying it, so finally I just took the thing out, and lo and behold it was completely clean! Every speck of quail poop had been eaten off, even in the corners!

    So, apparently mealworms really like to eat quail poop. So my question is, could I use mealworms to clean up after my quails? I'm thinking of setting up an quail pen with hardware cloth on the bottom so that their poop falls through into a mealworms bin, and then let the mealworms do their thing.
     
  2. Little Byrd

    Little Byrd Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    3
    61
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgia
    Has anyone tried this or know if this setup is a good idea or not?
     
  3. ibunnytail

    ibunnytail Out Of The Brooder

    18
    0
    25
    Dec 30, 2015
    California
    Interesting idea, following...
     
  4. Little Byrd

    Little Byrd Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    3
    61
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgia
    I guess nobody knooows...:/
     
  5. Duck Drover

    Duck Drover Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,427
    143
    169
    Apr 8, 2013
    Washington
    I want a colony of black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) under my quail cages when the quail move outside. I did not think mealworms ate poop but I know the BSFL will.
     
  6. BobDBirdDog

    BobDBirdDog Chillin' With My Peeps

    362
    38
    93
    Jun 8, 2014
    Tennessee
    I dont raise worms, but it seems they are chowing down on the poop (as you described) like many of the other insects that flock to poo after it has dried and crusted. I know earth worms love the dried cow poo as well as other insects. Its the digested residue of organic matter they find tasty.
    I would say go for it but be aware (not BEWARE) and in observation of any potential change in the birds for worms or disease that might occur. Now days, who knows what will become, happen, mutate or spawn and thrive.
    There is a parasite/worm (the horse hair worm) that lays eggs in organics and looks for insect host such as grasshoppers, crickets and others so that might be one to watch for. There are others as well, but who knows?

    I cant tell one fly from another, but if its anything like those little black flies that swarm around here every summer, COME AND GET THEM ALL.....FOR FREE. lol
     
  7. Little Byrd

    Little Byrd Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    3
    61
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgia

    I've been doing some research on what mealworms eat in the wild, and it is in fact normal for them to eat feces. I just don't know if the feces going straight into the mealworm bin without being dried would cause humidity problems or mold, or if the mealworms would still be safe for quails to eat if they ate quail poo....

    Since no else seems to know anything, I guess I'll just have to try it and see :). I'm hatching more quail in a month and will update how the mealworm setup works out.
     
  8. Little Byrd

    Little Byrd Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    3
    61
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgia

    Thanks, good to know
     
  9. Duck Drover

    Duck Drover Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,427
    143
    169
    Apr 8, 2013
    Washington

    They look more like a wasp than a fly and they have no mouth so they don't eat. All they do is mate, lay eggs, and then die. The larvae eats up poop and compost (no paper or shavings) rapidly and then they crawl out at the perfect stage to feed to chickens.
     
  10. BobDBirdDog

    BobDBirdDog Chillin' With My Peeps

    362
    38
    93
    Jun 8, 2014
    Tennessee
    Very odd that they have no mouth as adults......I ponder...... can this gene be altered and mutated and passed along to some humans? [​IMG] So weird, I was at the brooder today and noticed a fly that looked like the one I googled, I almost caught it as I was being diligent not to smush it. So it got away. You have my curiosity up, now I am going fly hunting, just need some big piles of crap for bait.

    Seems you have just taught me that not all Flies are useless.

    As for the horse hair worm, it is not suppose to be harmful to humans or pets, but I dont know if that applies to fowl and other creatures or not....but its a parasite.....so my thoughts on that are """"Yeah! Right""""! I found one in a grasshopper once as a kid and it turned me off to catching grasshoppers for fishing.
    (when the hopper or cricket) hits the water the worm leaves the body to swim in it natural habitat....water.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by